tldr version: This is a great book, excellent start to the series. I highly recommend Heist Society to anyone who enjoys YA contemporary Adventure books (pssst: That’s a similar genre to The Guardians of Enlightenment!)
I read this book because it was listed on my Goodreads recommended reads. I’m so glad that it was!
Heist society follows 15 year-old Katrina Bishop (Kat) on a mission to clear her father’s name, not with the police, with someone far worse. The book opens with Hale, Kat’s friend, getting her kicked out of boarding school. To be fair, Kat did con her way into the boarding school…but still, not cool, Hale! His intentions are pure, knowing that Kat’s father needs her help to clear his name. A man scorned by art theft tracks Kat down, threatening her; if she doesn’t convince her father to give back the paintings he stole, trouble would befall their family.
Problem is, Kat’s dad didn’t do it, and now she and her cast of mini con artists have to do the only thing they can: steal the art back.
This book is a really fun read, with a great cast of characters. The MC, Kat, is smart, calculating, and whitty. Her friend Hale, the guy who got her kicked out of school, provides some romantic tension, a staple in this genre. He is also the bank, funding the elaborate heist that Kat and her friends plan. Kat’s cousin, Gabrielle, works as the distracting eye candy, but holds her own when it comes to ideas and wit. This book features multidimensional characters, dodging painful stereotypes like brainless bombshell, or plain jane MC who lacks confidence.
The plot is enjoyable, with enough complexity to keep you surprised and interested, but not so much that you are confused and needing to re-read sections. I very much enjoy the heist aspect, planning and attempting to implement a con at a highly secure gallery. I enjoy Ally Carter’s writing, and have since read 3 other books written by her (perhaps more reviews to come…)
Downsides to this book: Kat doesn’t read like a 15 year old, and it seems more like the MC was made 15 in order to class the book as YA instead of NA. She certainly isn’t contending with the usual teenage stressors of homework, pressure to drink, and getting grounded. There is also an almost complete lack of adult supervision and intervention. To me, that doesn’t take away from it being an awesome book, but I certainly picture her older. She does have the typical teenage “should I, shouldn’t I” issue with her love interest… so there’s that!
This is the first book in a (currently) 3 part series (with two novellas as well) Overall I loved the book and give it 4.5 stolen paintings out of 5.
Full disclosure: I was not paid for this review, nor did I receive a free copy of the book in exchange for a review. I receive no compensation for anyone purchasing the book from the above links. Basically, I am just reviewing this book because I liked the book :)
I love reading, so let me know if you have any other book recommendations for me :)